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The Many Hats of a Learning Designer

Updated: May 6, 2023

Going by the titles of instructional design, learning experience design or learning design, this role is the complex intersection of many roles. Learning designers are the professionals responsible for creating effective learning experiences that drive learner engagement, knowledge retention, and skill development. In this article, we'll explore the various hats that our expert learning designers wear and the diverse range of skills required to successfully deliver impactful learning projects.

Learning Analysis

Our accomplished learning design team conduct thorough and comprehensive learning analysis to identify the current solutions, gaps and issues. The approach to analysis varies based on project, but our learning discovery phase can involve a mix of activities including stakeholder consultation, learner interviews, training needs analysis, task mapping or competency mapping, to name a few activities. This involves conducting detailed user research to understand the learners' needs, preferences, and behaviors.

Learning Strategy

Our learning designers will develop effective learning strategies that align with the client organization's goals and objectives. Through our learning discovery process, they map out the goals of the learning project and develop a comprehensive learning strategy that outlines the goals, objectives, and methods for achieving them.

Project Management

Our learning design team provides solid project management to ensure the learning programs are delivered on time, within budget, and to the required quality standards. The learning project manager creates a detailed project plan that outlines the scope, timeline, budget, and resources required for the project. They also identify potential risks and dependencies and develop contingency plans to mitigate them. They set up a regular cadence of meetings to track progress and report on project status to stakeholders.

Learning Design

At the core of a learning designer's job is, not surprisingly, learning design. This means our team are responsible for creating engaging and effective learning experiences that meet the needs of the learners and the organization. This includes developing learning objectives that are aligned with business needs, selecting instructional strategies that will fit with the environment and preferences of the learners, creating compelling and interactive learning content and designing assessments that align with the learning objectives.

Consulting with Subject Matter Experts

Our learning designers typically work closely with subject matter experts (SMEs) to ensure that the learning content is accurate and relevant. This involves collaborating with SMEs to develop learning content that meets the needs of the learners, is technically accurate and utilises case studies and content that reflects the context of the organisation.

eLearning Development

Our learning design team are proficient in eLearning development. This involves using authoring tools like Articulate Rise and Storyline including the development of advanced interactions, creating multimedia content, and ensuring the eLearning courses are compatible with various learning management systems (LMS) and devices.

Graphic Design

Our learning design team are also responsible for delivering learning that has high quality, professional, graphic design that reflects the branding of the client organisation. This involves using visual elements and layouts such as icons, images, and infographics to enhance the overall learning experience by increasing visual appeal and minimising cognitive load. Our learning designers go beyond the aesthetic appeal by applying Gestalt Theory to create visual hierarchies and guide learners' attention to the most important information.

Technical Writing

Our learning design team are often required to complete technical writing. They must be able to write clear, concise, and easy-to-understand content that effectively communicates complex concepts to the learners. This includes writing learning objectives, assessments, and instructional content.

UX Design & Testing

In addition to the hats mentioned above, our learning design also need to consider the UX (User Experience) Design when building courses. This involves creating eLearning courses that are user-friendly, intuitive and easy to navigate. It requires a deep understanding of how learners interact with the learning content and how they perceive the learning experience.

Usability testing is another key aspect of UX design. Our learning design team conduct usability tests to evaluate the effectiveness of the eLearning courses and identify areas for improvement.

Our learning design team consists of multifaceted professionals who wear many hats. We build our teams to combine a diverse range of skills, including learning analysis, strategy, design, eLearning development, consulting with subject matter experts, graphic design, UX design & testing, technical writing, learning strategy, and learning analysis. By providing a strong learn design team, we can best deliver effective learning solutions that meet the needs of the learners and the organization.

Please get in touch if you'd like to learn more.


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